Master of Sustainable and Safe Food Production - programme specification

Master i bæredygtig og sikker fødevareproduktion

Master of Sustainable and Safe Food Production

About the programme specification

The Master of Sustainable and Safe Food Production is included in the General Programme Specification which applies to all participants, enrolled on January 1st, 2022 or later. 


The part-time master’s programme is offered in accordance with the rules on part-time study programmes. The study programme is a programme equivalent to 60 ECTS credits (European Credit Transfer System), corresponding to one year of full-time studies. The work load is typically spread over two years of part-time studies. Enrollment in the program can last up to six years.

General admission requirements

Admission to a master’s programme is subject to the applicant having completed at least:

  • A relevant bachelor programme
  • A relevant professional bachelor’s programme
  • A relevant medium-cycle higher education study programme
  • A relevant diploma programme completed as a regulated course of study
  • A relevant foreign study programme at the same level

The curriculum for each part-time master’s programme specifies the specific bachelor programmes that give applicants direct admission to the study programme.

In accordance with the admission requirements for the part-time master’s programme, applicants must - in addition to a qualifying degree - have minimum two years of relevant work experience after having taken the qualifying degree. The curriculum for each part-time master’s programme specifies the requirements made for the applicant’s work experience.

Programme specific admission requirements

To be admitted to the programme, applicants must have achieved either a relevant medium-cycle (professional bachelor’s degree or the like, minimum three years) or long-cycle higher education programme, and they must have a minimum of two years of work experience in the food science and technology field. The student must have a solid foundation in the natural sciences (biology, chemistry, statistics) as well as an understanding of technical processes in food production lines.

Work experience is regarded as relevant, if it has been acquired through work in the private and public sector that involves development of products or processes, safety control and/or assessment of sustainability in food production or food distribution, or work in the public sector involving, for example, control, inspection, regulation, teaching or communication in the food science and technology field.

The entire program is taught in English. We recommend English language proficiency comparable with English B-level with a minimum grade of 3 from a Danish upper-secondary school. Non-Danish applicants can use IELTS (ACADEMIC), TOEFL, Cambridge Advanced English or Pearson (ACADEMIC) if you want to check your English level.

General Learning Objectives for the part time programs

The part-time master’s programme is a research-based higher education study programme on a level with a master’s programme. The master’s degree is obtained within the continuing education system where the student in question - based on his or her work experience and previous educational level - is offered continuing education in a specialized area or a broader perspective on an academic area or a multidisciplinary area. A part-time master’s programme constitutes an independent complete study programme.

A part-time master’s programme provides students with knowledge, skills, and competences qualifying them to hold highly qualified functions in private and public sectors, and in the consultancy industry. A part-time master’s programme generally ensures that the student is able to apply the academic and scientific methods and concepts of the field of study in question in connection with:


  • Reflect on the knowledge of the subject area(s) and identify scientific issues


  • Assessment and solution of theoretical and practical problems
  • Communication of academic problems and proposed solutions to peers and non-specialists


  • Management and development of complex work situations
  • Independent establishment of academic and interdisciplinary collaboration
  • Own academic development

The objectives of the part-time master’s programme are further defined in the curriculum for each individual part-time master’s programme.

Specific Learning Objectives for the part time programme

Upon completion of the programme, participants should be able to:


  • Explain the concept of sustainable food processing and preservation.
  • Identify national and international players and their roles in the production of sustainable and safe food products.
  • Explain possible financial and societal potentials and barriers associated with the production of sustainable and safe food products.
  • Discuss chemical and microbiological food safety in the context of sustainable food production
  • Identify and evaluate new feed and food resources.
  • Identify and assess chemical and microbiological contaminants in feed and food.
  • Describe the international principles for chemical and microbiological risk analysis.



  • Analyse approaches for improving the sustainability of current food production systems while maintaining food safety.
  • Select and combine methods for ensuring food safety with sustainable technologies in the development of new food products.
  • Analyse and assess a food safety problem and discuss its development in the context of food systems, markets, risk and differing conceptions and perceptions of safety, sustainability, and risk.
  • Select and apply epidemiological, microbiological, and chemical analytical methods to support risk and sustainable assessment of food products.
  • Summarise and present the results of epidemiological studies and risk analyses to various groups, including national and international authorities, food manufacturers and consumers.
  • Develop simple quantitative risk assessments and interpret the results of risk assessments made by others.



  • Reflect on the challenges that globalization and increased population growth pose for food safety and sustainable food production.
  • Reflect on different actors’ understandings of food, food safety and sustainability and how these affect the handling of food safety issues.
  • React to current national and international issues concerning food safety and sustainable food production in collaboration with relevant players, including public authorities, industry, and consumers.
  • Recommend further investigations or implementation of measures to ensure effective prevention and control, and ensure that sustainability is not compromised through such measures.
  • Evaluate and report an analysis of the production of a specific food product through the whole value chain with the aim of improving the sustainability of the food product.

Programme specific competence profile


The 60 ECTS credits prescribed for the part-time master’s programme are distributed as follows:

  • A number of mandatory modules equivalent to at least 35 ECTS credits which form the constituent elements of the identity and competence profile for the programme
  • A number of elective modules equivalent to up til 10 ECTS. Elective modules are to be approved by the head of study
  • A concluding master’s project/final project equivalent to 15 ECTS credits which - within a subject approved by the University - document that the level required for the programme has been achieved.


23F11 Chemical food safety 7.5 point Outside schedule structure
23F12 Microbial food safety in a global perspective 7.5 point Outside schedule structure
23F13 Food safety in context and global food system 5 point Outside schedule structure
23F14 Risk assessment of foodborne contaminants 10 point Outside schedule structure
23F15 Sustainable food production and processing 10 point Outside schedule structure
23F16 Monitoring and source tracking of foodborne diseases 5 point Outside schedule structure
SVEK13040U One Health international summer course 5 point Outside schedule structure

Modules 23F11, 23F12, 23F14, and 23F15 are mandatory.

Modules 23F13, 23F16 and SVEK13040U are proposed elective modules, but the students can select other relevant courses from the course catalogues at DTU or Copenhagen University. If a student elect a module not on the list above, the module needs approval from the head of study.

Module SVEK13040U is also offered in collaboration beteewn DTU and Copenhagen University. Enrolment is through Copenhagen University. Read more here: 

Curriculum, previous admission years

Master thesis

The master’s project/final project is the concluding project on a part-time master’s programme/a flexible master. The objective is to give the student an opportunity to apply the knowledge and competences acquired in an independent manner in a large-scale work. The project must have a coherent and wellstructured presentation in a good language in which a clearly formulated problem is answered through the application of theory and an explicit method. The contents may reflect the student’s practically acquired knowledge.

The master’s project must be approved by the head of studies to ensure that it falls within the programme focus area. In connection with a flexible master, the project subject is approved by the chairman of the department board of studies as part of the approval of the individual education plan.

The project must be in English and include a summary. The summary must also be in English, but a summary in another language can also be included in agreement with the supervisor. The summary is included in the overall assessment.

Project agreement and scope

The student must agree the subject for the project with his or her supervisor (flexible master’s programme) or head of studies (regulated master’s programme). The supervisor (flexible master’s programme) or head of studies (regulated master’s programme) must regularly monitor the development of the work and ensure that the project falls within the academic field of the study programme.

The project must be equivalent to 15 ECTS credits. The project period is agreed with the supervisor (flexible master’s programme) or head of studies (regulated master’s programme), taking into account any holiday. For the project in the flexible master’s programme, the project supervisor may differ from the ordinary supervisor.

See also the curriculums under the individual part-time master’s programmes.

Assessment etc.

Learning objectives for the project form part of the supervision. The project is assessed according to the 7-point grading scale by an external examiner on the basis of a report and an oral defence. The project and the oral exam will be assessed as a whole. If two students have prepared projects on a joint subject, they must be given an individual oral exam.

Head of study

Tine Hald
Building:201 Room:032
Phone:35 88 70 94

Rules for teaching

The Food Master courses are structured into weekly modules with a variety of learning activities such as watching short video lectures, reading selected material, doing quizzes, exercises and assignments, compiling of reports, and presenting results. Some exercises and assignments must be submitted in order to pass the courses. All courses conclude with an examination. The examination form varies between courses and appears from the individual course descriptions.

Within each course week, the students can plan their work effort as they wish and study anywhere they want. This gives a high degree of flexibility. A number of live online sessions are organised as part of each course. Some sessions are mandatory and others are optional, but students are encouraged to participate in all since it will add greatly to the community and to the students' learning process and engagement with fellow course participants and teachers. 

Exam rules

Each course/study element are concluded with an assessment. General rules on forms of assessment, pass requirements, part exams, etc. are laid down in the - Rules and regulations, chapter 3 ‘Exam rules’. The course description contains:

  • Exam form, including any part exams during the course
  • Forms of assessment, including exams with internal examiner or external examiner, 7-point grading scale, or ‘Pass’ or ‘Fail’

The assessment ‘Pass’ or ‘Fail’ can only be used for exams accounting for up to one third of the ECTS credits for the study programme.

Credit transfers and exemptions

Credit transfers

It is not possible to transfer ECTS points obtained at other educations to the Master Programme in Sustainable and Safe Food Production.

An exception can be made for students enrolled in the "Master i Fødevarekvailitet og -sikkerhed" at the University of Copenhagen. Contact the head of study for further information.


If, for example, a student fails to meet the deadlines specified in the programme specification or fail in the third exam attempt on a mandatory course, the student in question may only continue his or her studies if an exemption is granted. DTU’s credit transfer and exemption committee may grant an exemption from the programme specification rules, including curriculum, course descriptions, and DTU’s rules and regulations, provided that the exemption is not contrary to the ministerial orders of the Danish Ministry of Education.

An application for exemption must be submitted electronically via the exemption database: The Office for Study Programmes and Student Affairs will obtain a recommendation from the Head of Studies for the study programme for each application.

Head of studies

Tine Hald
DTU National Food Institute
+45 35 88 70 94
21 JULY 2024